I think of cameras, along with photographs, as cultural artifacts. In the same way that an anthropologist can look at jewelry or clothing to learn about the culture that created those things, the design and function of a camera can tell us about the culture that created it. Whereas artistic media such as painting, sculpture, and theater have multiple origins from multiple cultures, photography is unique among all forms in that it is of solely European origin.
By modifying and redesigning cameras, I intend to suggest what photography might look like if it had emerged from a different cultural context. Using an entire strip of film as one image is an attempt to connect photography with the flattened perspective one saw in Asian and Middle-Eastern painting, before the introduction of linear perspective.
Kwabena Slaughter (Brooklyn, NY) works in and between photography, sculpture, video and performance. He received an MFA in 2001 from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Since graduating Kwabena has been making his own work, stage-managing for a clown school, dancing with a trapeze-dance company, and teaching sculpture at the university level. Slaughter’s work has been featured in both solo and group exhibitions including shows at the Phoenix Gallery in NYC, Grand Projects in New Haven, CT. and SPACES Gallery in Cleveland, OH. Group Exhibitions including Interpreting Utopia at the Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art at SUNY New Paltz and ‘Structure and Stories’ at David Castillo Gallery in Miami, FL both in 2007; Frequency at the Studio Museum in Harlem in 2005 and Adaptive Behaviour at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in 2004; and in Unjustified at Apex Gallery in NYC, in 2002. In 2006 Slaughter received a New York State Council on the Arts New Media and Technology Grant. He has received residencies at ArtOmi Arts Residency in Omi, NY. In 2007, the Artists in the Marketplace at the Bronx Museum of the Arts in Bronx, NY. In 2005 and at Smack Mellon in Brooklyn, NY through its work/exchange Program in 2004. His writing on aesthetics has been published in the journal Philosophy and Social Action. Slaughter was an Artist-in-Residence at CPW in 2006.